What can I use instead of Orgeat? The best substitute for orgeat is almond syrup. Other alternatives include amaretto liqueur, Crème de Noyaux, almond extract, horchata, and falernum. You can also create your own DIY orgeat syrup from scratch.
Orgeat is a cocktail syrup made from almonds, sugar, and orange flower water. The overall taste is sweet and almondy – some have likened it to the taste of marzipan. Orgeat is a non-alcoholic ingredient used to flavor a variety of drinks. It is a key ingredient in the famous Mai Tai cocktail. Orzata syrup is an Italian variety of orgeat.
The Best Orgeat Substitutes
Almond syrup is made from high fructose corn syrup, water, and almond flavoring. It does not contain any additional flavors, so the taste is sweet and almondy.
Orgeat is a non-alcoholic taste ingredient in cocktails, so the closest substitute is regular almond syrup. However, it lacks the slightly more complex taste of orgeat that comes from the inclusion of orange flower or rose water.
Almond syrup is the nearest substitute for Orgeat. It can add the almond taste and sweetness required to cocktails. It should be used in the same ratio as orgeat as a drink ingredient.
Amaretto liquor is a syrupy drink that originates from Italy. Its sweetness and almondy taste profile make it an excellent substitute for orgeat in cocktails.
Take note that, unlike orgeat, amaretto liqueur contains alcohol. If that is not a factor, amaretto liqueur is an ideal replacement for orgeat in drinks, as it has a more complex taste profile than most other possible orgeat substitutions.
Amaretto liqueur can be used as a 1-to-1 replacement for orgeat.
Crème de Noyaux
Crème de Noyaux is a French crème liqueur that comes in amber or clear varieties. It has a marzipan-like taste.
Although Crème de Noyaux has an almond flavor, making it a suitable replacement for orgeat, it does not contain any nuts. The distinctive taste is from the apricot of cherry pits used to create the drink.
While the taste of Crème de Noyaux can work as a good taste stand-in for orgeat, it is an alcoholic beverage, so it is not suitable for creating mocktails.
Almond extract is a super-concentrated almond flavoring that is most commonly used in baking. It is a mixture of water, alcohol, and an extract of bitter almonds.
Only use almond extract to add taste, and never as a main ingredient. It has an intense almond flavor, but without any sweetness of orgeat.
To create a more authentic orgeat substitute using almond extract, add a few drops to maple syrup. Only use a few drops of almond extract to provide the required level of almond taste.
Horchata is a plant-based nutty milk that originated in Spain but is popular in South American cuisine. It can be consumed neat or added to other beverages to add flavor.
The distinctive sweet and nutty flavors can make horchata a suitable replacement for orgeat in some applications.
It does not have the same syrupy texture as orgeat and is not as concentrated, so it can be used as a main ingredient in hot and cold beverages.
Horchata will give drinks a milky appearance which is not the same as orgeat. However, the distinctly nutty element and the natural sweetness make it a good option if you don’t have orgeat available.
Falernum is made from lime, ginger, cloves, and spices. It is a Caribbean cocktail drink with strong associations with Tiki bar culture.
When using falernum, keep in mind that it comes in alcoholic and non-alcoholic versions, so choose the one you need. It has a distinctly sweet taste, infused with elements of citrus.
Falernum is not the same as orgeat, but it works well as a substitute if you need to create a cocktail with a distinctly tropical feel. Falernum is not a good alternative if you need a replacement that tastes the same as orgeat.
You can use more falernum in cocktails than you would orgeat, as the almond taste is less intense.
DIY Orgeat Syrup
Orgeat is an inexpensive, readily available product, so making your own usually is unnecessary. However, you may prefer to make your own if you have the ingredients available or want to customize the mix.
To create your own orgeat syrup, you will need raw almonds, orange flower water, sugar, and citric acid.
One of the benefits of making homemade orgeat syrup is that brandy or vodka can be included to give the mixture an added spike.
Creating your own DIY orgeat is a fun way to personalize the recipe. The inclusion of citric acid and alcohol in the recipe will make the mix last a lot longer than if you leave those ingredients out.